Direct and Indirect of Past Continuous Tense
Direct and Indirect of Past Continuous Tense


We talked about direct and indirect of past indefinite tense. In the article below you will learn about direct and indirect of past continuous tense. You will learn how to convey a message to someone from past progressive tense. Direct and indirect speech structures for positive, negative, negative interrogative and interrogative sentences.

For direct and indirect speech complete rules click: Direct and indirect speech complete rules

Direct and Indirect of Past Continuous Tense

Tense Change:
As a rule, when we change a direct speech sentence we go one tense back, so therefore, when you change a direct speech from past continuous tense, you have to use past perfect continuous tense in indirect speech.

Affirmatives

  • Direct speech: RP +, + S + be2 + V1ing + ROTS
    He said, “We were watching a movie at 10:00 pm last night.”
  • Indirect speech: RP + that night+ S + had been + V1ing + ROTS
    He told me that they had been watching a movie at 10:00 pm the night before.

Negatives

  • Direct speech: RP +, + S + be2 not + V1ing + ROTS
    I said to my teacher, “She was not cheating during the quiz.”
  • Indirect speech: RP + that + S + had not + been + V1ing + ROTS
    I told my teacher that she hadn`t been cheating during the quiz.

Interrogatives

  • Direct speech: RP +, + Be2 + S + V1ing + ROTS
    They asked, “Were you trying to convince us for joining the IHLP class at Learn ESL?”
  • Indirect speech: RP + if + S + had been + V1ing + ROTS
    The asked me if I had been trying to convince them for joining the IHLP class at Learn ESL.

Negative interrogative

  • Direct speech: RP +, + Be 2 not + S + V1ing + ROTS
    She asked, “Weren’t they eating dinner at King Restaurant?”
  • Indirect speech: RP + if + S + had not + been + V1ing + ROTS
    She asked me if they had not been eating dinner at King Restaurant.

WH/Information questions

  • Direct speech: RP +, +WH + be2 + S + V1ing + ROTS
    He asked, “What were you doing yesterday?”
  • Indirect speech: RP + WH + S + had been + V1ing + ROTS
    He wanted to know what I had been doing the day before.